Line Breaking Strain Guide

Stealph Viper

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Match anglers often refer to the lines they use in diameters, rather than breaking strain, which can be confusing to some.

They use this terminology when talking about the thickness of the high-tech lines they use, mostly when pole-fishing.

So, to help you understand each line's true strength we have compiled a list showing the most commonly used line diameters and their average relative breaking strains...



Line diameter
Average breaking strain


0.06mm
12oz

0.07mm
1lb 2oz

0.08mm
1lb 12oz

0.09mm
2lb

0.10mm
2lb 6oz

0.11mm
2lb 14oz

0.12mm
3lb 4oz

0.14mm
4lb 12oz

0.16mm
5lb 10oz

0.18mm
6lb 8oz

0.20mm
7lb 12oz

0.22mm
9lb

0.24mm
10lb 4oz

0.26mm
11lb 6oz

Please remember that this is only a guide, and some lines may vary in diameter, and breaking strain.
 
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slb

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That's great SV, looks like the figures are those from a high-tech line. Standard mono would be lower in breaking strain for the same diameter, but have more stretch and so be more suitable as main line.
 

Stealph Viper

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Hello Steve,

Yeah they're the diameters of Hi tech lines, you're correct, most mainlines would have a higher diameter for the same breaking strain.

Steph.
 

Jeff Woodhouse

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What is termed a Hi-Tech line though?

How do you know what it is?

Seems to me those "averages" are pretty thin for even the "hi-tech" lines I've used in the past. Something like a hooklink material might measure up and that could be use on a pole, but I wouldn't use it nor on a reel.

Treat them all with some suspicion.
 

Stealph Viper

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Match anglers often refer to the lines they use in diameters, rather than breaking strain, which can be confusing to some.

They use this terminology when talking about the thickness of the high-tech lines they use, mostly when pole-fishing.

This was in my First original posting.

Sorry for any confusion.
 

preston96

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I pine for the days when i knew what 2 to 10lb line and a size 18 to a 2 hook looked like.......someone moved the goalposts!:D

I doubt money had anything to do with it :wh
 

Jeff Woodhouse

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This was in my First original posting.

Sorry for any confusion.
__________________

Nah, it's me that's trying to confuse. Sorry

Let me state it again - CORRECTLY

"Something like a hooklink material might measure up and that could be of use, BUT NOT on a pole, nor on a reel."

Reason, I have some Shimano Silk Shock (eg .09mm = 2.2lbs or 1kg). It's difficult enough to handle as a hooklink material let alone putting it on a pole. I even have reservations about using it as hooklink it's so fine and so easily damages.

I just think there are limits you can take line to safely and by seeking the 'Holy Grail' some users/manufacturers exceed those limits.
 

Stealph Viper

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It is just a guide line so that when someone says use a 0.10 hook length that someone else who isn't sure what that equates to in Pounds and Ounces can get a rough idea.

I agree with you though, i couldn't tie a 0.06 hooklength to a size 26 hook, i'm just to heavy handed, and if i had to go down to that size just to hook a fish, i think i'd rather try somewhere else.
 

slb

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I think the guides as laid out by SV are pretty close to the strain Vs diameter of most modern high-tech (ie pre-stretched) lines, although slightly overrated for breaking strain.

I tend to find, and have in my mind, that 0.12 is around 3lb. That is my standard line for carp hooklengths in the winter and mainline for silver fish rigs all year. I completely disagree with WW and find 0.12 (Sensas Feeling) is plenty strong enough to use as mainline in that situation on the pole or whip.
I also use high-tech hooklengths for carp on pole and rod and line in the summer, when I will use 0.20 diameter (usually breaking around 8lb) and find it perfectly robust enough. My mainline in that situation is 6lb 'standard' mono (Ultima Power Match), and the stretch in it usually means my 8lb hooklength will snap in a pressure situation before my mainline due to the differences in stretchiness.

Handling high-tech lines is just down to taking your time when tying knots, wetting knots carefully before tightening and being aware that they are a different beast from old-fashioned mono.
If you ever saw me playing a carp you would understand how much pressure you can apply to a fish using a high-tech line on either a pole, or rod and line as long as your tackle is balanced.
 

Mark Wintle

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The problem with the manufacturer's figures are that they usually understate the diameters and overstate the breaking strains, at least for the hi-tech lines. Reel lines tend to understate the breaking strains. I suspect the quoted figures fall into the first category whereas lines like Maxima and Daiwa Sensor (reel lines) fall into the second e.g. 2lb Maxima breaks at 2-13.

For pole fishing, the idea is to use hi-tech lines for both mainline and hook link and it works best if the lines used are the same brand/type. By having a hooklink 2/100th of a mm smaller diameter than the mainline you get the safety margin and better presentation. Furthermore, by having a short 6" or 8" hooklink when pole fishing you remove the need to put shot on it.
 

Graham Whatmore

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One thing I have learned over my many years of fishing is not to believe the manufacturers stated diameters or breaking strains. Everyone comments on the strength of Preston's power line for instance and the reason it is much stronger than equivalent line diameters is that its thicker than the stated diameter. Two hooklength lines that I have miked that come out exactly as stated are the Fox lines and the Shimano silk shock and both are very good lines with my preference for the silk shock, its lovely and soft.

Main lines almost without exception break at a much higher level than stated anything from 30% to 50% and as I have said many times before why don't they follow Shakespeares example and display a breaking strain with a knot in it, much more relevant to us anglers. Mark W. once told me (and I believe him) that Daiwa Sensor line breaks way above its stated b.s. the 4lb breaks at 6lb and the 6lb breaks at 8lb so it isn't surprising it is termed a 'strong line' is it.
 

slb

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Stated diameters and strains are not always correct, but I think many of them are not too far out. I have tested quite a few on my micrometer and find that if they are out, it is usually only by something like 0.05 on a line from 0.08 to 0.20. I haven't tested any for breaking strain, as I don't have a reliable way of doing it.
The odd line does crop up that is nowhere near the claimed diameter. Powerline is the most obvious culprit, but many more traditional monos are understated as well. Although one line did surprise me recently when I bought some for float fishing on a river and that was Bayer Perlon. I used to use this for hooklengths before high-tech lines came on the market. It mic'd up pretty near bang on the stated diameter every time.

There are other considerations than diameter and breaking strain and these are often ignored in this kind of debate. Suppleness and abrasion resistance are the two easiest ones to work out simply by feeling the line and rubbing it over a piece of wood.
Some lines will crinkle badly when rubbed a couple of times over wood, others hardly get marked or burred at all.
If you hold a length of line off the spool and let it drop, you will see that some seem to float down, while others just look stiff. A supple line may be what you want, but there are occasions when a stiffer line is better, when trying to stop carp ejecting a bait, for instance.

Another overlooked point with line is how consistent the diameters are. I used to use Matchteam until Powerline came on the market. I then swapped to Powerline for about a year until I worked out the shortcomings (more later...) and then settled on Sensas Feeling. Recently, I tried Matchteam again, mainly because having convinced the boy Fisk about high-tech lines, he was using it for his barbel fishing with great success. I bought some spools and saw that it was softer than the Sensas line, so made up some rigs. I now saw what I consider to be its downfall - the diameters are quite wildly different as you go through the spool. In some cases I found I could feel much thicker bits as I slid my fingers along a rig.

The other problem I found with Powerline was getting knots to bed down properly. I had lots of them spring open when the line was under no tension. Spade end whippings would slip off hooks and pole rigs would untie themselves. I decided to move on because of that, not because of the diameter discrepancy. Once I know that the line is not accurate for diameter, I can live with it as long as I know by how much it is out.

To finish, the main considerations should probably be: can I afford the line and is it easily available? If you can walk to your local shop or order regularly online, then that may help to decide on a line for you.
I have tried, tested and like the performance of Feeling, as mentioned, Browning Cenitan and Shimano Silk Shock, but I can only buy the Sensas line local to me so that's what I use.
As to being able to afford it, I know that most top match anglers use Shimano Technium for feeder fishing. They may say in articles that they are using their sponsor's line, but it is most likely Technium because it is such a good abrasion resistant line. It definitely gives an edge if you are using it because it is practically unbreakable.
But at £35 a spool, I know I can't afford it!
 
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